SARATOGA SPRINGS — An upscale mixed-use development next to Northway Exit 15 that was started nearly 20 years ago is coming back before city planners, with plans to revive parts of the development proposal that haven’t been built.
A third and fourth phase of construction at Excelsior Park was recently submitted to the city Planning and Economic Development Office. It calls for construction of an additional 163 residential units, along with 36,200 square feet of commercial space, and a 60-room “boutique” hotel that would also include a 200-seat restaurant.
The city Planning Board saw an introductory presentation at its Sept. 10 meeting, and will initiate the required environmental impact review at its Sept. 24 meeting.
Excelsior Park, at the immediate southwest corner of Exit 15, was first approved by the city for the first phase of construction in 2002. Its most visible component is the 100-suite Residence Inn by Marriott hotel that can be seen from the Northway exit, but it already includes 160 units of townhouses and upscale apartments that are built or currently under construction.
The planned third and fourth phases of development would be at the southern end of the property, near the Spring Run valley. Original plans for that land were put on hold during the housing market collapse during the 2008 recession, and the project’s special permit approvals then expired because of inaction by the developer. That is why the plans, in revised form, are coming back before the Planning Board for a new approval.
The new plans would develop nearly 35 acres with a mix of commercial and residential uses. They would include a spa, a community recreation center with swimming pool, and a 60-room hotel with restaurant, banquet facility, and its own pool. Residential development plans call for 10 three-bedroom townhouses, 39 two-bedroom townhouses, 24 one-bedroom townhouses and 85 apartments with either three, two or one bedrooms.
Developer John Witt of Saratoga Springs is also working on the possibility of affordable housing on part of the site, project representative David Carr of the The LA Group, the developer’s landscape architecture representative, told the Planning Board at its Sept. 10 meeting.
The project is in a part of the city that has been designated for high- to moderate-density, mixed-use development and neo-traditional neighborhood designs. Wetlands associated with Spring Run limit the land that can be developed to the south. The Route 50 arterial borders the property on the north, and the Northway borders it on the east.